Jesse Puljujarvi

Darren Walker

Puljujarvi is an offensive fixture who skates like the wind and provides size. He has an explosive first step for a big body and has no noticeable flaws in his stride. There is great extension on his skating stride when he is moving flat out, allowing him to control the speed of the game. His acceleration is spectacular for someone his size, allowing him to get the quick jump once he recognizes a spot to where he needs to get. Despite being noted as a scorer, we think he is just as proficient as a set-up guy. Puljujarvi keeps his feet moving and remains patient until he is content with the development of the play before passing the puck. His vision is near the top of this class and he is able to lay out situational passes of each unique scenario. He works well with limited space and has the puck skills to maintain possession in open ice while in motion or working under duress. Puljujarvi oozes high-end skill and awareness, showing an ability to remain elusive. He loves to drive to the net from the perimeter with or without the puck, showing readiness to make a split-second move to create an opportunity. He does a good job of drawing defenders to him and opening up opportunities for teammates. He boasts a powerful shot and a goal-scoring instinct to find lanes that allow him to be a threat from anywhere. He is constantly moving his feet and never remains flat-footed, always looking for an open area of the ice where he can pick up the play. While he pitches in and plays on the boards, Puljujarvi has a noticeable style of circling a scrum and preparing himself to pick up a puck and carry the play to open ice. He is hard to play against and a real threat to overthrow possession on the forecheck. Defensively, Puljujarvi shows hustle and tenacity. He recognizes threats and backchecks all the way to his goal. He plays with the range of a center and reads the play to go where he can offer support. His wingspan is a huge asset as it allows him to get to the puck and limit the range of his opponents. Puljujarvi follows puck movement well and has quick reactions that enable him to steal pucks and transition the play up ice.  (May 2016)